Taking place on Saturday, May 10, Darkness into Light is a unique, early morning fundraising event for Pieta House which begins in darkness at 4.15am as thousands of people walk or run a 5km route while dawn is breaking. This is the second year that Mullingar will host Darkness into Light, while Athlone, Longford and Tullamore are hosting events for the first time.
Speaking at the launch, Joan Freeman of Pieta House said: “The Mullingar Darkness into Light walk was a huge success last year so I’m delighted that Athlone, Longford and Tullamore have also come on board giving us a great spread throughout the Midlands. I hope we’ll have huge numbers out on the morning of May 10. Thanks to everyone who has supported us and to Electric Ireland who are helping us to expand Darkness into Light into every corner of Ireland.”
Actress and poet Mary McEvoy, who has battled depression, joined Joan in saying a few words at the Darkness into Light launch in Mullinagr, along with Liz Daly from the Mullingar committee, Peter Masterson from the Longford committee, Sean Gannon from the Athlone committee, Fiona Goulding from the Tullamore committee, and Sean Doolin who represented the event’s sponsor, Electric Ireland.
Among the guests on the night were Paul Sharry, Westmeath football captain, Tom Carr, Westmeath minor football manager, Bernard Flynn, former Meath footballer, Niall McNamee, Offaly footballer, Gerry Duffy, Ironman and motivational speaker, Robbie Henshaw, Connacht rugby player, Jim Smyth from Midlands 103, Paddy Donnelly of the IFA, and John Cochrane and the staff of the Greville Arms Hotel.
Liz Daly of the Mullingar Darkness into Light committee thanked all those who had come to show their support for Pieta House and said that such support had helped build up incredible momentum for the event on May 10.
Darkness into Light 2013 attracted 40,000 participants in 20 locations around Ireland. With this year’s event taking place in an incredible 39 locations, including international walks in London and Sydney, Pieta House is hoping for a near doubling of last year’s turnout.
This year, Pieta House is linking Darkness into Light with its Mind Our Men campaign, which aims to reduce male suicide in Ireland. It is asking participants to bring a male friend or family member with them on the walk – it could be a friend, brother, father or work colleague.
Athlone’s Darkness into Light walk beings at Athlone Town Stadium, Mullingar’s from the Army Barracks, Longford’s starting point is the Scout Hall, and Darkness into Light Tullamore begins at Tullamore Rugby Club. Online registration and further details are available now at www.darknessintolight.ie.